Abra Cadavre Jewellery Monday, Apr 5 2010 

Recently, a New Zealand graphic designer started up his own jewellery collection. And I’ll tell you what – it’s bloody amazing!

The name gives you a hint at the tone of the collection (Abra Cadavre Jewellery – clever, isn’t it?) but for those of you that don’t get it, it’s a nod towards the macabre. Some of the pieces include Voodoo Doll Earrings, a Zombie Cameo and Severed Skull Studs. Dark, sexy, but still beautiful. Also, each piece is handmade and finely crafted.

I am lucky enough to have purchased a few things so far from the Abra Cadavre website, something for me and something for a friend. I don’t know who was more pleased, me or her!

The pieces aren’t expensive, starting from NZD$10.00 and going up to NZD$110.00. There are earrings, pendants, bracelets and cameos, with more being added to the product range all the time. If you like your jewellery with a bit of attitude that strays from the norm, then this is the range for you!

Abra Cadavre Jewellery

Number 1 Shoes Saturday, Mar 20 2010 

Sometimes you just can’t afford to spend big bucks on all of your fashion items – especially when it comes to shoes. Having a few key pieces that are designer and gorgeously and un-justifiably expensive is one of life’s great pleasures, but lets face it – it’s also nice to have an abundance of shoes to choose from! Perhaps for a specific outfit, or maybe because you know if you wear your pricey pairs every day they will get scuffed and old looking pretty quickly. So unless you are a millionaire who can afford to live in Jimmy Choo’s every day, you need a cheaper, everyday option.

Number One Shoe Warehouse is a retail chain that sells shoes, shoes and more shoes. They have a massive stock of everything for men, women and children which is absolutely fantastic when they have one of their “Buy two and get the third pair free!” sales – families come in droves.

The shoes themselves range from NZD$5.00 to more designer items that can go up to NZD$150, but most fall around the NZD$30 range – you really can’t beat their prices. And the quality is pretty damn good too! I have a lot of shoes from them that were bought over the years and have held together beautifully. Sure, I have had a few that have only lasted a season but for that price, who cares?

They are located all over New Zealand, their stores set up in aisles of shoe types. Men’s shoes are on one side, kids on another, and (most important) a nice BIG section for the ladies. Each aisle has a theme – sport shoes, sandals, fashion heels, boots and end of lines. This makes it easy to browse for what you want, and the prices are clearly marked. They almost always have all of the sizes for each shoe in store, and if not they are more than happy to track a pair down for you.

Recently I noticed they had started selling their shoes on TradeMe, and for a voracious online shopper like myself, this has been an exciting find. (Click here to see their listings on TradeMe) This process has been a breeze, they have been helpful and efficient and saved me a lot of hassle. They also have their own website now, where you can browse through a nice selection of their shoes, buy online or see their recent catalogues. Obviously, they can’t put every single pair of shoes on their website (they have a massive range, as I said!) which means a trip into one of their stores is a must, but I have been pretty damn happy with the selection on their site thus far.

So, winter will soon be upon us and their new range of boots has just come out – have a look! I just bought myself a few pairs! 😀

Duet Boot - Chocolate NZD$49.99

BAGAMOYO Boot - Black NZD$49.99

Udon Boot - White NZD$44.99

Tolstoy - Dark Purple NZD$49.99

Niron Fast - Black NZD$30.00

Ayaka Fast - Black NZD$29.99

Rican Skate - White Pink $39.99

Mens: BG Outlaw Cas - White NZD$39.99

Mens: Pence - White Grey NZD$39.99

Mens: Cerbe Dress - Black NZD$40.00

Girls: Lobelia - Black Fuschia NZD$24.99

Boys: Ecoli Skate - White Black NZD$29.99

Now, thats just a small selection of the shoes that Number One has. They have, literally, thousands of styles. They have punk shoes, heels in various colours, boring old work shoes, soccer boots and even an assortment of slippers and cheapie Ugg-style boots. They aren’t Mi Piaci or Andrea Biani but they certainly do the job – and at a wicked price!

Karen Walker Wednesday, Feb 3 2010 

Now, almost everybody I know these days has an item (or more!) of Karen Walker jewellery. The pieces are gorgeous, unique and well-crafted.

Karen Walker, the designer, is an adept and artistic woman born and bred in New Zealand. After leaving Epsom Girls Grammar High School (Auckland, NZ) in 1988, she went on to further education in fashion until 1990. Well, that particular study paid off because by 1995 she owned two stores and in 1998 began selling to Barneys in New York! Phew! Talented woman! Her clothes have been worn by BjörkSienna MillerLiv TylerClaire Danes, Tyra banks, Kate WinsletJennifer Lopez and many more celebrities over the years, which in itself attests to her skill. From there she extended her talents from clothing, to sunglasses, cosmetics, jewellery and even a range of designer paints for Resene.

Now, I appreciate everything that Karen Walker has done for the fashion world, but what I truly adore and hunger for, is her eclectic jewellery range!  You have to see it to believe it – robots, planes, animals, weapons and symbols. The first time you look at some of these pieces you think “What the-?” because they are so unusual, but mmaaannn they look good on! Available in gold, white gold and silver (some pieces even coming in a two-tone option) and varied sizes, they can go with any outfit to any event. This isn’t a cheap range, but it won’t break the bank either, with prices starting at NZD$100.00 and going up to NZD$1000 (approximately). Most fall between the NZD$200-NZD$300 category, which is understandable for designer pieces such as these.

Have a look on the Karen Walker Jewellery website to view more products and stockists worldwide as well as online. There are subtle pieces, there are outrageous pieces – AND I WANT THEM ALL!

Have a look as some of the range below… See what YOU think…

Diamond Skull Enhancer

Rope Chequerboard Pendant

Nautical Disk Pendant

Goat's Head Pendant

Owl Cocktail Ring

Jet Fighter Earrings

Arrow Brooch

Girl With Axe Pendant

Wisdom Hand Pendant